tv [untitled] July 28, 2011 2:30pm-3:00pm PDT
here. you can come to the mike in any order. >> thank you. i am resident of san francisco along to 41 masonic. i'm extremely excited and hopeful for this project. i lived nine years in that area. i have been waiting for something to go in the bacon's murdering -- vacant rinse building. there is this fear of retail in san francisco. we want to help the mom and oppp stores. the ability to walk down and buy some underwear, that would be great. that is -- there is nothing in the city i can walk to. i'm excited about the potential. as a voter and taxpayer, two thumbs up for target. thank you. president olague: thank you.
>> good afternoon, commissioners. i am a 25-year resident. 16 years near geary and masonic. i used to shop at sears and mervyn's and i am looking forward to target coming in. we need -- and has a history of retail. we need a strong anchor tenant. it would provide local jobs. it is occupying the existing footprint, not displacing any mom-and-pop stores. there will be working with the masonic corridor project. with traffic lights and signals and traffic engineering. and ewing terraces. -- a feeling terraces. many of the strongly support this project. we urge you to support it. >> it afternoon. i also live on ewing terrace
and i am in support of target. i have a history of a back to sears and i am excited to see a strong anchor replace what has become a blighted and on safe- feeling area in the neighborhood. the mixed use there will support smaller retail spaces in the same city center. and i am encouraged to hear the issues around traffic are being addressed in coordination with the masonic project. i wanted to voice my support. thank you. >> president olague: thank you. >> good afternoon. i also live on ewing terrace. i lived 11 years there. i have been to the meetings and
i think it will be a wonderful thing for the neighborhood. especially a lot of tax revenue that is going to coma, the city of the dead, we would like to keep it here. 200 jobs supposedly and a wonderful new facade to the rather ugly building. thank you and i hope you approve it. >> as you know i own a small business down a ways from this project. the only thing i would encourage is for the commission to take into consideration and economic impact study of some sort to see what effect it will have on small business. the retail giant like this will have a ripple effect in every direction. for quite a distance. that is the only thing that i urge. thank you. >> president olague: thank you. is there additional public comment?
>> i am on the board of this neighborhood association which is behind the target project and we were fortunate to hear the presentation as well as target's presentations to us. a couple times in the past. we are very much in favor of this project. we hope it goes forward. thank you. >> president olague: thank you. is there additional public comment? public comment is closed. commissioner moore? commissioner moore: i feel good that someone is going to use the existing infrastructure. the devil is always in the details. i do like the approach to clearing up access and
circulation at the edges of the project as well as inside. to serve retail more efficiently and -- avoid not knowing where to go. which was an issue previously. the questions i will ask, i am prepared to support a conditional use for formula retail to move into this space. i have some issues with the architectural solutions that are proposed in this project. i find the detail of what we saw today, that might be a sketch idea to get us going, they are a little too excess of to what i believe is an iconic piece of architecture. it is a period piece attributed
to international style. it has a more modest way, it could be brought forward without making this peace look too much like ellie and free web architecture. i have problems with that. everyone knows where sears is. it does not matter. we are -- this building does not sit alongside a freeway that you would have to call it out as loudly in order to know where you are. it is at masonic and we know where it is. the choice of what i think is -- there are too many of them, including the freestanding sign that we're discuss -- not discussing today, it is more than what i am prepared to support, including the facade treatment and the complete alteration of the building expression. it is slightly more toned down
way to make a point. target has a draw as a location as sears does. everyone knows target. you know when you see the circle. it does not need all those extra loudness in order to be present. i'm prepared to support the project, but i would be asking that there is a significant rethinking and toning down of aggressive architecture. we have pantone coming up. that is another destination that will have to market self -- market itself along the boulevard. i think to harmonize, particularly with the fact that this is the rt corridor. if they can work with each other, i am prepared to support
the project. i will ask for additional architectural rework. >> president olague: commissioner miguel. >> vice president miguel: i am in line with commissioner moore's comet. i have known it since it started in the 1950's. ever since sears moved out. everyone -- no one has heard of city center. it is completely unknown as a location, whatsoever. you would go to mervyn's and good guys at sears and this was standard for people lived in the city for lifelong and people who just come in. you are going to put a city
center sign on their although i do not see why anyone would. it does not have to be prominent in order to have anyone know the location. this is not a shopping center in los angeles or miami. it has to be respectful of the architecture, which no one in their right mind has ever accused sears of applying -- implying the finest architects in the world for their building but they are what they are. as long as they are that, you can only put too much lipstick and hair loss on something without making in paris. that is the only way i can express it. i appreciate the emphasis on greening, i urge you to do that
as much as possible. although you did mention it, the ungodly parking lots, all six of them, all have horrible looking retaining walls. they should be greened in one way or another. we should try to get rid of the view of that horrible race of men. -- gray cement. this was continued signage but irish you to work with the department -- i urge you to work with the department as far as the beautification of the building itself. >> president olague: commissioner antonini? >> commissioner antonini: what was talked about earlier, a formula retail, the fact this is
formula retail. it is the type that people like a lot. they go specifically to target and leave san francisco, taking their dollars and employment and taxes with them to other places. people will do this if we do not put it here. it will be somewhere else and people will commute to it. this is long overdue. it sounds like a great site. as was also pointed out, everyday clothing is unavailable in san francisco except for downtown or stonestown. just for everyday needs, it is hard to pull into summer and by these types of things and this will establish a third site where you can purchase these types of things. architecturally, i think you are doing a lot of the right things. i disagree with the other commissioners. you have to work with staff to make it appropriate. international style and midcentury modern are sort of
euphemisms for funky 1950's architecture which is what this is. this year's hospital that was bare -- built here near kaiser and a variety of structures were the low point of architecture. even now they were built in that era, what we can do to enlighten them little and certainly opening it is important. i went there to buy a tape at best buy and i walked around to find the entrance for half an hour. it was very dark and windy. opening up a lot of windows and certainly some brighter elements of the masonic end and geary will make it more welcoming. not to mention the area that has been proposed also. i think those are all a big improvement. the other thing and this is certainly not discussion for today, but there are the parking
lots which will remain as they are. this is not something for the future to look at. i think we could some day hopefully have some better usage. you'll have better parking but in an elevated structure that might make available those other areas for development. it is something to keep in mind as we move forward or expansion of target or other retailers of that type into those areas. there is a lot of opportunity there. it would look better from the street and from the air when you look at that. from the people who came from ewing court, most of you know it was long before at&t, at candlestick, or seale stadium. that was a cul-de-sac. it is an interesting history. thank you. i think this will be a great proposal and we will work with staff and i am in favor of it. >> i wanted to clarify what the
commissioner said about design issues. to give some clear direction. you are supportive of changes at the street level, opening up more pedestrian activity. the issues i think i heard were the science and the structures to hold the signs. -- scigns and the structures to hold the signs. the multicolored panels, that is the concerns i hear. if you look at the changes they are proposing, most of the building does not change except for that area over those strip windows where those multicolored panels are. that area needs to have another look and maybe something more in keeping with the original building. while at the same time sprucing it up. i think my sense is you support the changes and opening everything at the store level -- street level.
that is something you want to support. just to clarify that is correct. >> president olague: commissioner moore? >> commissioner moore: even if this is not the strongest building of modernism, you have a building with ramparts and a simple form sitting on top of it announcing itself as a recognizable blade sign. i go to sears when i am going to mervyn's. the business of putting all these extra lipstick as was described it detracts from it. it was a simple building. upgrading it should be simple and direct. it should use some simple colors and probably should not put as
many blade signs on them. if it is target, that is fine by me. it oculd be -- could be the red dog building. that is fine by me. while this commission supports free use by major formula retail, we also have a pending entitlement which was not given by this commission where despite the fact that they breed development -- they gave target permission to open up a formula retail in that large retail space. we are giving target two major locations. the other one will be more car area rented -- car oriented. what i have about the ramparts,
this is an amazing piece of architecture and i would like to leave as much of it in the future. i do not want to make it look like a retrofit of l.a. >> i fully support this use. the building has been sitting there vacant for years. i live on fulton and it does need to be opened up. i am glad that the cafe will activate ground for use. i sometimes wonder, i am sure that target has their own model for the cafe. when we talk about not wanting to duplicate or replicate what they do in l.a., i wonder if
there might be a more interesting way they might bring that cafe into use. i do not know if that would be a local prop.. it is usually pizza hut or something. at least the one in coma is formula retail stuff. i wonder if there is a way to make it less of that plastic feel is what i am hearing from the other commissioners. in relation to the passat of the building. i am glad that they will be greening. it does feel like a fortress. it is not very walkable. it is good that will be included as well. i think that there are places in the city that are appropriate for formula retail. this is definitely one of them.
there is no argument from me as relates to that issue, either. so i do support it and i support the sentiments that have been expressed by commissioners miguel and kathrin. it is a positive move if these types of changes can be considered. do you have any comments about any of that? or reactions? >> the conditions of approval, include a condition we continue to work with staff and the director asked for specifics and now has them. i suspect we will hear about them. please approve it and let us go work with staff. >> president olague: great. let's continue talking for another half-hour.
commissioner miguel? >> vice president miguel: i appreciated the comments on the corner restaurant, having it is an absolute in my mind. in activating that part of the street. a formal a fast-food restaurant i would oppose with everybody -- a formula fast food restaurant i would oppose with every bone in my body. there are -- if there are any place in san francisco, if you bring in someone, a large number of locally based purveyors of good food that would love to have that location and the amount of trade that would automatically becoming there, there is no reason to resort
and i will not name them to any number of fast-food formula retail restaurants. this should be more said francisco. with that, i will move to approve the conditional use authorization with the conditions to continue to work with the department. >> president olague: commissioner antonini? >> commissioner antonini: i had a question about how soon this would be able to move forward. i know there is permitting and a lot of things we cannot control. >> march 2013. target opens three times a year. they open new stores on three days so they can be correctly merchandised for the season. that is one of the three days
and that is the day. >> you know the downtown store opening? >> i do not. it is 2012. october 2012. >> vice president miguel: thank you. we will be looking forward to it. as far as the treatment on the outside, i know there is the multicolored blades that had a lot of discussion. something along those lines might be good. maybe not having so many different colors. maybe more of the uniform of the mid-green in a row. toning it down with uniformity or some kind of treatment to broaden out the -- britain upped the outside without it having be so different from what is there now. i totally agree. you can do a lot of good by bringing in some sort of a food
service and i can think of a lot of different firms that are san francisco and owned in base. that would bring people in to the area. just because it is time to eat and they decide to do some shopping also. with the parking you have, it would be a selling point to bring people in. even when they not -- might not be coming anyway. >> commissioner moore: i wanted to make a comment about target not using a higher percentage of parking for themselves. through them making a commitment to better parking for all, that is a very strong element and shows a commitment which i like. i hope that targets, including the architect, seize our comment more as a positive -- sees our
comment more of a positive. there -- this department and this commission will be in dialogue and make this a win-win for all. do not see it as a put down. rather and encouragement. >> on the motion to approve. commissioner antonini, -- that passes in an announcemenunanimo. item 14 was continued. at 4141 geary boulevard, request for conditional use authorization.
>> president olague: you can began. >> good evening. i will be presenting this case today. case -- this is a request for a conditional use from verizon wireless to allow the installation of nine antennas and two -- this is located on geary boulevard. they will be flush mounted on an existing penthouse at the height of 85 feet. the associated mechanical
equipment cabinets would be installed on the roof to the north of the penthouse from sixth avenue from 30 feet. the property is a location preference one preferred location. it is operated by kaiser permanente. verizon is undertaking a project to improve wireless coverage in an area that is receiving marginal coverage. the proposed in tennis would measure approximately 4 feet high by -- antennas would measure 4 feet high. there will be screened from view by synthetic material that is radiofrequency transparent. verizon conducted the community average meeting on this proposal on april 28, 2011 in the nearby branch library. 35 people attended the meeting.
five attendees indicating their opposition to the project on the sign in shape. as of today, the department has received one phone call and one letter in opposition to the proposal. the phone call and the weather -- letter cited health concerns with the project. i have copies of the letter of opposition received on july 25 and i submit this for the record. the department believes the project is necessary and desirable for the following reasons. the project complies with all applicable requirements of the planning code. it is consistent with applicable objectives and policies of the general plan. the project is consistent with the 1996 wts citing guidelines. it is a location preference one. a preferred location. the project will provide improved cell phone coverage in an area that receives marginal
coverage. the department recommends the commission approved a conditional use with conditions as contained in the draft motion before you. i am available for questions. >> president olague: thank you. project sponsor? >> thank you. good afternoon. i am representing verizon wireless. i am project manager on this project. i am wondering if the screen can show. we do have dane erickson who is an engineer and he can speak to the report. also russ benson can answer technical questions. this project was co-designed
with planning. it is a preference one side. it is a preferred location. every requested revision made by the planning department was changed on any design with verizon wireless immediately. all public notification torme in compliance including the neighborhood meeting as mentioned as well as the posting, which i am providing verification here. verizon wireless requests approval of this project in accordance with san francisco code planning requirements. secondly, i would like to speak to -- taking a look at the photos simulation. the antennas will be flush mounted and screened. they are not visible from the street. the attachments and cables will be covered